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Tafic skipper, a product of street football

Publishing Date : 08 April, 2019


Street football which is played in the dusty grounds in villages and townships has been a training ground for some of the world’s greatest footballers. The dusty football grounds in the village of Senete saw the birth of a combative marksman in the name of Uyapo ‘Carlos’ Tibathuwe, the man who wears the captain’s armband at Tafic Sporting Club in Francistown.

The speedy winger-cum-midfielder cut his teeth in the game playing on the street, a less controlled or guided platform which gave him an opportunity to practice and develop his skill. The small sided games provided an opportunity to enhance the creativity and footwork without being chided by a coach for being too fancy. It is at Senete Primary School in 1997 where he learnt the formalities of the game playing football under the guidance and instruction of a coach.

He would continue with football through high school at Nkange Junior Secondary School and Tutume McConnell College where he doubled with athletics. It is at Nkange JSS where he was nicknamed ‘Carlos’ by his football coach Mr Molopo. After completing senior school, Carlos joined Black Peril Football. He went on to join Matebejane and moved to Maun Tigers where he was appointed Captain.

He also played for Motlakase Power Dynamos before joining Tafic where he was appointed captain at the beginning of the 2018/19 season. Carlos was part of the team that promoted Black Peril to First Division and he has won the 2017 Independence Cup with Tafic, and the 2016/17 Debswana First Division North championship also with Tafic. He is poised to win another championship medal with Tafic as they seek to gain automatic promotion to the BTC Premiership.

He envisions a transformed Tafic which will return stronger to the top-flight football and compete favourably. To achieve this says her aims to help his “teammates especially younger players to achieve individual success through teamwork, sportsmanship, commitment, discipline and character building that will guide them both on and off the field and in the community.”

He outlines discipline, commitment, skill and speed as his major strengths as a player. On he handles the responsibility of leading a big team like Tafic, he pointed out that his job is to guide other players and support them on and off the pitch and make sure that he listens to their worries and take them to relevant people. “I am very open and friendly so it makes things easier between me, players and technical team,” he said.

Carlos is more than home at Matjimenyenga, he is very happy to be captain of his favourite club. He acknowledged that growing up, he knew Tafic before any other team in the country and so it has been his favorite team from childhood. A true product of village football, Carlos is also the captain for his home team, Senete United which competes in Nkange Top 8 Football Tournament, arguably one of the best festive football tournaments in the country.

Including Carlos, Tafic has recruited five players from Nkange who play in the highly competitive Nkange Top 8 Football Tournament. The other four are Upoga Dekesha from Senete Gunners, Golebaone Baopedi of Nkange Flying Stars, Buyani Kgomotso of Senete United and Molebatsi Kangangwane of Nkange Flying Stars who was not registered for this season owing to injury.



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